A good friend of mine knew of a Ross style steering gear for sale. The deal was made and the seller offered to take the steering gear to the local Fed Ex store to be packed and shipped to me.
They slid a shipping tube over the steering shaft and a box over the steering box. When the Fed Ex guy shows up at our office he hands my office manager a shipping tube with our name and address on it and a tag stating this package weighs 23 pounds.
Of course the shipping tube is empty and the steering box and shaft is long gone. The Fed Ex guy sez too bad have no idea not my problem contact the shipper. Called the shipper and their response was wow that's really too bad but we have no way to trace anything once Fed Ex picks it up. You better contact Fed Ex here's the 800 number. I call Fed Ex and tell them my story they say we will look for it but in reality we won't find it because we have no idea where it got lost and have no idea where to start looking sorry!
So no steering unit no way to trace it and no one cares, hooray for Fed Ex. Never Never ship via Fed Ex.
Responsible shippers build crates to get the product to the buyer in
"as expected" condition. A box and shipping tube ? Give me a break !
You could have strapped it to a pallet and sent it thru Fastenal for less.
I can parallel those words using UPS, ordered some parts payed the shipper $600 and UPS $150 up front for a damaged empty box and the rest of the words were the same.
All of them screw up. UPS, Fed Ex, USPS, it doesn't matter. Shipping anything is a crapshoot. You can't do anything about them losing a package, but you can reduce the risk of damage with defensive packaging.
Something I do on packages that have something heavy that will tear up the box is attach a card with address and phone # to the item itself. That way if it gets out of the box there is still a way for the carrier to know where it belongs. I have had that happen to a few items. Dan
Frankly, I don't think none of the shippers give a rats ass about "the stuff". It's all about the volume and of course the bottom line.
I once knew a guy who worked for UPS. He said the warehouse guys make a game out of seeing how far they can throw packages. FRAGILE labels? All the more fun. Hearing broken pieces? Extra points. Is it true? Maybe. Is it just UPS? Likely not.
I'll agree with Steve Jelf. I have to send my restored 1927 Florida license plate to the Florida DMV in Tallahassee for "authentication".; I'm worried sick about shipping it.
Hell John the DMV lose people who are waiting in a line at the counter and you want to send them license plates!
I would suggest finding someone in Florida to send them to and have them hand carry them to the DMV so the plates never leave someone's grasp.
I have a friend who ships packages every day and they will not mark anything fragile because when they did they always were destroyed but when they sent them unmarked they arrive OK.
I'm sorry for the loss of the Ross style steering gear.
I'm curious; as you signed for the package, did you make a notation that the box was empty, and did not weigh 23 lbs.?
I believe, if you did, that the shipper owes you the money back, regardless of whether Fedex pays him or not. Hopefully, the shipper put a DV of at least the purchase price onto this shipment.
Burger, A shipping crate is the worst way to ship anything. I have never gotten a wooden crate shipped to me in one piece. I had a transmission show up without any of the crate. They did duct tape the air line and the check to the side of the tranny but not a stick of wood. Crates get tossed below the table to be sorted after all the small stuff get done. But when they TOSS the crate it goes off the other side to the floor. About a 3 foot drop and the crate splits open. And this happens at every stop along the way. Only once in 35 years has a crate made it in one piece. Scott
Don't get too discouraged. I've had stuff get lost in transit before. I've never had anything permanently lost. It DOES take time for a large organization to find things however. My very best advice is KEEP CONTACTING THEM. Make a call at least once a day to ask about progress. Send photos of the item or similar item. If possible, locate which terminals the package visited and contact those terminals directly. Not so hard a thing to figure out, since on-line shipment tracking usually identifies terminal locations and shipment waypoints. Again, KEEP CONTACTING THEM. If you appear not to care, so will they.
That's terrible about loosing the steering box. In reality, most people don't have clue how to pack things for shipment so that they arrive in one piece. That goes double for heavier items that require special effort to keep them inside the carton. The "UPS Store" is good for only one thing- dropping off packages.
I have worked in one of UPS's large "sort" facilities, and did some time
with USPS as well. I never saw anyone at UPS making sport of throwing
parcels, but the sheer speed and volume when loading trailers WILL have
Uncle Fred's cumbersome and heavy package coming down the chute
AFTER Aunt Mabel's crystal set that she felt would be OK to ship in a shoe
box with a little tissue paper stuffed in the corners.
The USPS story was far different. I ship A LOT of antique glass, so I was
horrified to see night crews at many "sort" locations shooting "3-pointers"
from across the room into (and often missing) the canvas carts set up around
the perimeter for different destinations. I spoke with inspectors about it, but
I doubt anything changed.
The only real control we have over such problems is packing our stuff "for
war" so the apes cannot bash it, or the engine block doesn't get set on it.
A common problem is with the grey matter area between the ears of the shipper,
himself, .... first by believing the carrier gives a shit. But secondly, by being
so stupid as to not consider the logistics and handling between Point A and
Point B. Card-board boxes are fine for some things, but weird stuff that is heavy,
awkward, or fragile ?
I had to ship an 1870's toilet to a museum in Chicago. It got a 1/2" plywood
box built around it with 4" of clearance on all sides. It was then injection-molded
with foam to make the box a solid brick. The box was then skeleton framed
with 2x3 lumber, and the process repeated with another plywood box and foam
around that one. Surprise, surprise. It got there in one piece.
Freight companies are in business to move parcels. Key word: MOVE. They are
NOT in business to handle them like they are eggs. That is the job of the person
on the shipping end, or the receiver making sure his goods get sent in a manner
that ensures delivery as expected. Many times I have gone all Gunny on a shipper
and even sent extra dough and harsh instruction on how to pack something. Some
bulbs do not burn as bright as others,
ALWAYS SHIP flat items like signs and license plates sandwiched between two
pieces of plywood. Sure, you pay for the weight of the plywood, but guaranteed,
that nice flat object is just what "the system" want to make into a taco. Got a
very sad porcelain sign on the wall in my shop squashed into a "U" shape by USPS
to remind me of this every day.
Have sold & shipped parts cross-country, including wood and glass items. 'Pack them' as though you are also going to be the receiver! Secure inside-out-around, and all should weather the storm. Positive results!
Hal, My son worked for UPS load out and loading, which is where all of the nooby grunts start.Growing up in a reasonably responsible family where you care a little about the other person or his stuff,throwing fragile things especially was game on. On the short trailers they use it was almost required to throw it from front to back to stack it or unload it. He asked a minor supervisor about it and was told to mind his own job and don't worry about it. Unfortunately all jobs are like that now regardless of if you are a trash man or a NASA scientist. Like my grandma once said,"If you don't expect much,you're not going to get much." There are still a lot of good people out there. But there are a lot of "weeds" too. And I think it's about time to start weeding the garden, or there won't be any produce. But I'm an optimist and I'm going down with the ship.Fight on men. I moved my T frame. (now its T related)
I can't say whether the story was true, but it was told for the truth. I'm sure it does go on, to some extent, in some places. Hopefully, not as bad as the Jim Cary clip above.
been a Fed Ex courier almost 30 years, sorry this happened. I always tell folks pack it good ! they get treated rough in our system ! I have received engines and transmissions in fine shape - no damage at all - but you have to pack them good ! also put your name address inside with the item as been stated. Also agree, I would never sign if box is empty - call complain and trace as advised. I too would call each station through your tracking number and I would complain about your couriers attitude - make a fus. Get peoples attention, worth a shot. Lot's of good folks at Fed Ex too, you talk to the right one and they just might give a good search for your item. Sorry again, next time if there is one. Never sign if it is not right and get insurance also. Never seen anyone making a game of breaking stuff, but they do load as fast as can be done and often times with no reguard to stacking, just get it in the truck and on the belt fast as possible - that is the way it is.
I learned a long time ago that no matter how small an item is, it had better be in an 8"X8" box. Small packages get lost too easily. If it is heavy or has sharp edges, corners, or protrusions, the box needs to have several layers of cardboard lining all sides and packing material such as wadded newspaper packed tightly around the item so that it cannot move in the box. Loose items can and do make holes in single layer boxes. One layer of bubble wrap or pouring in a few styrofoam peanuts are not enough. Odd shapes require bigger boxes, more layers, and more packing material, the item should not be able to move around in the box. Never trust a shipper to pack your item for you.
C'mon now, Jeff .... are you suggesting personal responsibility ???
Say it ain't so !
Yeah Burger, If you want it done right, you have to do it yourself, but you had better understand what right is in the first place. Some people just don't understand that those boxes are handled roughly, and that heavy stuff moving freely in a wimpy box will break out just by inertia. I bought a pair of NOS cylinder heads for a V8-60 flathead that were put in a box with some bubble wrap. What I got was 2 heads, 1 piece of bubble wrap, and half a box with my name on it, all in a plastic bin. At least I got both heads and they weren't damaged.
One would think......that UPS, being in the shipping business......would know better than most individuals how to properly package something so it would make the trip. Does the UPS store not take on some responsibility for the package arriving safely when the customer PAID them to package and ship it?
UPS UNITED PARCEL SMASHERS!!
Just to say. I live in Ontario Canada Bought a magneto from Daniel Kraft in Ben Lomond CA Weighed 18 lb Daniel took his time to decide how to ship it We discussed whether it came here or to an address in the States. Dan packed it well, shipped it cross border all correctly labelled so that no secondary inspection was done, proper value declared and we were delivered a perfect box containing a perfect magneto . Fifty feet of bubble wrap, flat USPS shipping box.
Took ten days Well done Daniel and thank you
I think Dan Hatch's idea is the best, along with packing everything correctly.
Bought a Mohawk Transmission on ebay. It was sent in 2 boxes through USPS. I received the shifter but not the trans. Went back and forth with the seller (pre buyer protection on ebay) He said tough and fizzled away. At least 2 months later I get a note from my local PO they have a box for me. I go in and in one of those white PO crates. In the crate was a shredded box a transmission a stainless 24 oz thermos several dirty emtpy cups, missing? the bolts to hold the shifter to the trans.